I read a self-help book awhile ago called “The Tools,” because a friend raved about it. Those kinds of books are usually not my thing, but I checked it out. It had a lot of interesting things to say, but others didn’t resonate. Rather than ignoring everything because it didn’t all work for me, I chose the things I liked and discarded the rest.
The part I liked best talked about being grateful. I’ve incorporated a few minutes of “gratitude reflection” into my morning back-exercise regimen. I sit back on my heels, take a deep breath, and say out loud: What am I grateful for today? I think of five things and say them out loud. Verbalizing that way helps me focus on them. When my attention strays, I notice that and gently bring it back.
I try to find different gratitudes for each day. They might sound the same as previous ones (example: my son called me last night), but it’s new for today even though it was the same gratitude I verbalized last week after he called. Doing my daily gratitudes helps me stay positive in my life. I have so many good things and don’t want to spend my senior years focusing on the not-so-good things.
We all have a choice. If you get off on complaining and rehashing each negative, upsetting thing that happens, then go for it. However, if you want to embrace life, stop whining and focus on what makes you grateful.